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O.K. This will be my first season with a a crossbow. I bought a Mission MXB-360 and I really like it. So, I'm over that hurdle.

I hunt exclusively out of a Summit Viper climbing tree stand. I've been shooting the crossbow off of my backyard deck to get a feel of how the shot trajectory is when shooting down at an angle. So far so good, but the deck isn't that high and I hunt anywhere from 20 to 25 feet up and I wanted to get some shooting in from my actual tree stand at a height at or near where I would be hunting from. So, my daughter and I took a walk in the woods with my tree stand, crossbow, and a large block target.

So, here's what I've found out so far... With my climber on my back, and a small day pack, the crossbow was really awkward to carry in and out of the woods. I can imagine what it will be like trying to manage a small flashlight as well. Do you guys use a sling on your crossbow? Even if I were to consider that, how would I manage that with a climber?

Once I got to a suitable tree, stand set up and hoisting my crossbow and my pack up went well. Not all that different from doing the same with my bow and pack.

I cocked the crossbow using a rope cocking aid <span style="text-decoration: underline">after I climbed up</span>. It was a pleasant surprise how well and easily that went. The limbs fit down nicely inside of my shooting rail and when cocked, I was easily able to pull the crossbow up and lay it across my stand's shooting rail. I still have some concerns about the noise generated by the hooks for the cocking aid when they ride along the side of the crossbow's rail as I cock the rope. Do you guys cock and un-cock at your vehicle or when you get to your stand? I posed the noise question to Mission's tech staff and they recommended a little rail lube on the outside of the rails? Have any of you tried that? Thoughts?

As for shooting, that went well too. I shot from 4 yards out to 30 yards at various positions. Being left handed, shooting off my left shoulder was the most awkward of course and shooting in front and to the right were much easier. The Viper has diagonal tubes that extend up from the horizontal portion of the top rail, to the top cable that wraps around the tree. Those diagonal tubes were awkward to maneuver around and it took a bit of effort and a lot of movement to get in position to shoot.

Once in position, shooting went well. I was very pleased that the top 20 yard scope cross hair was on at both the 4 yard shot (nearly straight down) out to just over 20 yards, with no having to hold low to account for the steep trajectory. I shot reasonably well out to 30 yards, but had some room for improvement at that range.

As for getting into position, I was in a sitting position to start. That's a bit unusual for me, as with a bow I always shot from a standing position (mostly because of my tree stand choice with a top rail.) So, I'm trying to figure out whether or not I should stand and raise my top rail up so I can use it for a rest, or keep shooting from a sitting or crouching position. (We were running out of daylight and I didn't get to try that yesterday.) Any thoughts on your preferences?

All in all, I feel like even after bow hunting for 16+ years, I'm starting over again trying to figure out how to make this new equipment work for me.

Any advice will be very much appreciated!!!!!!!
 

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I hunt with a summit viper and xbow also. I cant stand carrying a climber on my back so I sling the xbow and even though it seems silly I carry the stand in one hand and light in the other. would not want to pack a summit and an xbow for a long distance would need a small game cart for that.
 

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WexfordBowhunter said:
So, here's what I've found out so far... With my climber on my back, and a small day pack, the crossbow was really awkward to carry in and out of the woods. I can imagine what it will be like trying to manage a small flashlight as well. Do you guys use a sling on your crossbow? Even if I were to consider that, how would I manage that with a climber?
I don't sling as the horizontal limbs catch on everything along the way. Crossbows are just a plain pain in the rear to carry in and out with any other equipment. Especially treestands. No easy way to do it.


Do you guys cock and un-cock at your vehicle or when you get to your stand?
I cock the bow before I climb up. I don't like to carry a cocked crossbow in or out if I can avoid it. I don't like to cock once I am in my stand as I hunt out of smaller hang on stands.

As for getting into position, I was in a sitting position to start. That's a bit unusual for me, as with a bow I always shot from a standing position (mostly because of my tree stand choice with a top rail.) So, I'm trying to figure out whether or not I should stand and raise my top rail up so I can use it for a rest, or keep shooting from a sitting or crouching position. (We were running out of daylight and I didn't get to try that yesterday.) Any thoughts on your preferences?
I prefer to stand once I see deer approaching. I just feel more maneuverable if I am standing. Down side is no rest and raising the bow. You can't hold a crossbow up too long before you start shaking and have to lower it.

All in all, I feel like even after bow hunting for 16+ years, I'm starting over again trying to figure out how to make this new equipment work for me.
Every choice of equipment Time in the stand with the crossbow will be the best teacher you can find. Good thing is you are way ahead of the curve since you are already an accomplished archery hunter.

Best of luck this fall. I look forward to hearing about some successful hunts with the Mission 360.
 

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Carrying a crossbow is a pain the rear and I haven't really found a good way to do it. I sling mine, but I don't have to carry a stand either.

I cock mine when I leave the vehicle or the house most of the time. Don't raise the bow to the stand with an arrow in it however.

We hunt out of ladderstands and blinds and have shot about all of our deer from a seated position.

The best thing to do is what you have already done and that is practice out of the tree to find what works for you. Good Luck this fall.
 

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Since going from a compound to a crossbow, I quickly abandoned the climbing stand. I now hunt from ladders, and ground blinds. I sling mine when walking to my stand with a backpack and don' have to many issues. I usually cock mine before climbing into which ever stand I am using
 

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I hunt with a crossbow from a Summit Viper also. I strap my crossbow to my tree stand along with my back pack. I usually place my folded-up outer layer of clothing (my 'leafy suit' or outer jacket) on the upper part of the tree stand (behind my head), and then strap my back pack onto the tree stand, and then strap the crossbow on, using the folded up garment as a cushion to prevent the crossbow from 'bumping' against the tree stand (I use a strap at this spot to hold the bow tight so I don't lose my garment).

Works really well for me.

And, I always cock the crossbow just before I climb up the tree.
 

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I bought a crossbow for my son last year.It would be a pain carrying a crossbow and a climber just like it's a pain carrying a rifle and a climber.We hunted out of hang-ons and ladder stands so carrying just the crossbow with a sling was a breeze.Shooting down at an angle has no affect on trajectory.The only thing that matters is the horizontal distance between you and the target.I cocked the crossbow when we left the truck and hauled it up without a bolt.
 

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I hunt out of a Summit Openshot and really like shooting out of it and have found shooting both sitting and standing to be effective.

I carry the crossbow and have my climber on my back. I use a carabiner to clip my daypack to my climber. Flashlight is on my head, not in my hand. I haven't used a regular flashlight in about 15 years because I like to have a hand free to move branches as I am walking.

Hunting with a crossbow for the first time in a treestand was a little awkward, but I adjusted nicely and had a great first season with it!

Good luck!
 

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Buy a headlamp. You can get a good one for $20. They provide more than enough light while walking. And it is one less thing to carry. You can always keep a bright flashlight in your pack.
It sounds like you are doing the right thing by practicing. Don't fall into the trap of only shooting from one position. Keep your options open. Sometimes you will sit. Other times stand. I am left handed also. I like to stand up for shots to my left.
 

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This will be my first attempt hunting with a crossbow.
This season my plan is hunting out of a pop up blind. That has a back pack case. I plan on attracting that to a backpack, attach a folding camp chair to the pack frame on my back and keep my crossbow in it case with quive and cocking rope and tools. This way I can either use handles on case or the shoulder strap to carry in.
It's going to be a chore but only about a half mile walk to where I plan on setting up.
Depending on number of hunters I see I might stash the blind and chair and just bring bow and pack in and out.
 

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Like was said buy a headlamp, anywhere you look the light is pointing. Your hands are free. Every store sells them from cheap to expensive models. I've been using a Northwest Territory (Kmart) one for about 3 years. It has 2-4-8 led modes and cost about $5. I keep 2 backup lights in my pack.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Guys, I appreciate the great responses.

I went back to the woods today for a little experimenting. First thing, I figured out how to lash my crossbow to my climbing tree stand with a couple of bungee cords for carrying it in. That went fantastic. Nice and solid, no noise, not nearly as cumbersome as one might guess. Here's a couple of pics...





Sorry for the poor cell phone pics.

I also figured out that if I drop the seat on my Viper as far down as it can go, and raise my shooting rail to a couple of inches above my waistline, that puts my climbing bar at a real nice height to use for a rest.

I'm pretty happy so far. A couple of other things that I've found out. The rail lube on the outside faces of the rail didn't work as well as I might have hoped to cut down on the screeching noise while cocking. Any thoughts on that would be appreciated.

The crossbow lashed to the stand worked so well, the flashlight will be no issue. btw, I really don't like a head lamp. I hunt a tight little spot (and even in my other areas) I don't like flashing a light around any more than I have too. I usually carry my 2 AA cell Mag Light with my hand cupped around the bulb end to reduce the amount of light I shine around.

I'm anxious for the coming weekend.
 

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Best of luck on the SRA opener. I will be out as well, weather depending.
 

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I don't understand why the hooks would screech while traveling up the barrel. Maybe a Parker Roller Rope Cocker would work better?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks Arrowhead. I looked up the Parker Roller Rope Cocker on-line and liked what I saw. Do you know how long the rope is, as measured from the inboard faces of the handles?

I also sent you a PM.
 

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WexfordBowhunter said:
Thanks Arrowhead. I looked up the Parker Roller Rope Cocker on-line and liked what I saw. Do you know how long the rope is, as measured from the inboard faces of the handles?

I also sent you a PM.
Most rope cockers have extra rope. Pull the end out of one handle, knot it to get your comfortable length, and trim off the excess. Then the knot pulls back into the handle.
 

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The plain truth is they don't explain stuff when you have to haul a small back pack, a tree stand on the back, a harvested deer, a bow, cross bow or rifle, and no one ever explained how much in shape you have to be.
Easy to see why someone can be forty, thirty pounds or more overweight, and still attempt to go hunting.
Hunting is suppose to be a fun and easy thing.
 
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